tv BBC World News PBS February 17, 2011 6:00pm-6:30pm PST
wide range of companies. what can we do for you? >> and now bbc world nules. >> troops take control of bahrain's capital as the u.s. calls for restraints. a day of rage in libya. thousands take to the streets. some reports say 10 people are killed in clashes. a former cargo handle senior jailed for life for plotting to -- cargo handler is jailed for life for plotting to blow up j.f.k. airport. coming up later in the program, the new artificial limbs moving by mind control. and the tragic life of anna nicole smith brought to the stage at an unlikely london venue.
a brutal crackdown has silenced anti-government protests in the tiny gulf state of bahrain. protesters have been banned and the military has been ordered to tighten its grip. three people died and more than 200 injured when police broke up the main camp. the unrest comes amid a wave of protests in the middle east and northern africa. bahrain's demonstrators want wide ranging political reforms. our report from the capital manama. >> without warning, the police came. tear gas, rubber bullets, and even live rounds. the tools to end a protest that had been peaceful. they moved through the crowd spreading fear and panic. by the time they had finished, hundreds were injured, at least three dead. they had hoped to copy egypt's
revolution. but this is what they got. bloodshed, and tears. hundreds converged on the hospital to mourn their losses. in the only safe place left for them to gather. >> the last few minutes we believe another body has been brought to the hospital. these are the people who were driven out of the center of manama in the middle of the night. you can see that they're angry. and they've now made this their temporary base. >> the hospital morgue is a gruesome testimony to what happened. the full picture too shocking to reveal. but clear evidence of the ammunition used against the protesters. >> more than 200 inside. he was just leaving. they shoot him when he was leaving. this man. that man, he wants to speak with the police. please, don't shoot, don't shoot. they shoot him. and see what they do. see what -- let all people in the world to see what they are
doing. now our country. >> the wards are full of the injured including a surgeon beaten while trying to help others. now a patient in his own hospital. >> they start with -- everything, everywhere. and they are killing. get up. you don't think they will kill you. >> tonight, gulf ministers held an emergency meeting. a reflection of their fear that this crisis could ignite the region. >> just over 24 hours after the king apologized for the violence, how can you justify what has taken place in your country? >> the crinlt was -- country was on the brink of a sectarian abyss. so it was a very important step that had to happen. and that, unfortunately, le cri
and with more demonstrations being talked about, the pain and the bloodshed may not be over yet. ian panel, bbc news, bahrain. >> there have also been reports of seller deaths during violent crashes between -- clashes between demonstrators in yemmen and libya. southern yemen, protesters are calling for an end to the three decades in power of sala and in libya, doctors in the second city of bengaze that 10 bodies have been brought it their hospital. here's our world affairs correspondent adam minot. >> protesters sent fire to the vehicles in albada and and a number of towns in libya. demonstrations spread to the capital tripoli. >> it's a trend against the
regime. people who want to demonstrate peacefully, some of them are farfetched. too big. qaddafi down. out and so on. this is too early, too optimistic. but there is a trend of anti-qaddafi feeling. >> muammar qaddafi has ruled libya for more than 40 years. ebbs the longest serving arab leader and controls all the levers of power. supporters have responded to protests by mounting their own demonstrations. but in the wave of fury directed against entrenched autocratic leaders, his authority is now being questioned. the mood of anger has spread to a growing list of countries. there have been demonstrations in jordan, iran and yemen and norts have responded with a mixture of promised reforms and strict clampdowns on
protesters. yemen has seen some of the most violent protests of the past week. gangs of angry youths hurling rocks and stones took to the streets of the capital sanaa. provoking a pitched battle between pro-government loyalists and people who say they want to change leadership. the anti-government demonstrators have a simple message for the president ali abdula sali. after 30 years in power, he must go. >> i want to send a message to president sala. i want him to look at what has happened to this country. and to those he sent to beat us. like hosni mubarak, i'm telling him he should step down. >> emboldened by unrest croors the arab world, -- croors the arob world,ang br poverty, unemployment and corrupt government. the demonstrations and the pressure on established rulers
threatens to seriously destabilize the region where most of the world's oil is produced. the price of oil has climbed to a two-year high. the protests have not directly affected oil production. but the world is watching unfolding events. very nervously. adam minot, bbc nuelings. >> let's get more on the protests in libya. dr. benjamin barber is an american political theorist and author of jihad versus mcworld. he is on the line from new york. dr. barber, do you find it strange that there have been no anti-government demonstrations in the capital in so many other cities and towns, but not in the capital tripoli? >> no, i don't find it strange. and as i've been writing and speaking recently, you know, the notion that there are dominoes and every case is going to resemble every other case and because it happened that way in cairo or yemen it's going to happen that way in syria or libya really is a result of ignorance of the
circumstances in each place. there's no question that there will be an -- and is a wave, a democratic wave that is virally moving across the middle east. but it will express itself in very, very different ways. the fact is in libya, in tripoli, where colonel qaddafi and his family are most of the time, there isn't anything like the anti-qaddafi feeling that you get in bangazi, 2,000 kilometers over east -- toward egypt where the rival clans for 25 or 30 years have seen qaddafi as a tribal enemy and have been trying to make trouble for him. in 1999, for example, those same clans in bengaze were responsible for arresting the four nurses in the bulgarian doctor and creating that 10-year case of they were accused of having given kids in the hospital aids and they were condemned to death and only 10 years later were they released by the intervention of one of qaddafi's sons and by bulgaria and the european commission. so there's been a long-time
rivalry between bengaze and the clans and qaddafi clans around tripoli and it makes sense you will see the first disturbances taking place in bengaze where his rivals and enemies are and that in tripoli where he's i won't say popular but where he's a lot less unpopular, you aren't going to see that kind of action. >> colonel qaddafi has recently begun a process of reconciliation with the west, with the united states, or the united kingdom. does that indicate possibly that his position isn't as strong as it used to be, that he needs some sort of outside help? >> well, it depends on how you read it. some people read the reaction in 2005 that led to the ending of the chemical weapons program and the biological weapons program there as a reaction to the invasion of iraq. but it had been negotiated well before the invasion of iraq. and i think signaled qaddafi's intention to allow his economy to become part of the world economy. and to stop playing the
unpopular and for him not very convenient role of rogue states. so i don't see it as weakness but a kind of strength. the fact that he had the strength to reach out and go back on 20 years of being a rogue state and a trichet state and a state that trained -- a terrorist state and a state that trained the i.r.a. and the german terrorist groups and so on, was a radical change in -- to suggest strength, i think, and not weakness. i think among the people who are currently ruling in the middle east, there's a reason that qaddafi's been there for 40 years. and not that he's a buffoon or a fool or weak. >> dr. barber, thank you very much indeed. dr. benjamin barber on the line from new york. ze nefment a -- zena ben-ali is said to be in a grave condition in hospital after forced out of office. he slipped into a coma two days ago. he and his family fled as soon
as the popular uprise being ended his 23-year grip on power. in egypt, the authorities have raested the interior minister, habib al-adla on corruption charges who has been blamed for police vie lenls during the unrest that forced the departure of the president hosni mubarak. pro-democracy activists will be back upon the streets of cairo on friday. they will be celebrating their victory over the mubarak regime. they will also be trying to remind the higher ministry council that they believe there is plenty more work to be done. earlier i spoke to modin who will be taking part in the march on tahir square and whether the people trust the military. >> still a few elements or a few people who were extremely close to the mubarak regime. extremely close to stories of corruption, extremely close to stories of oppressing people's rights. so there's still some --
there's still a bunch of people in the ministry that we are very wary of and untrustworthy of and we wonder why the army or the military hasn't taken a more active role in bringing -- and smotching these people from the current position. >> the head of the military general tantawi is supposed to be close to the united states and he was recently on a visit to the pentagon. does that make you happy or do you feel completely the reverse about that? >> i don't know -- i don't know what -- i don't know what to make of it. i know the military takes a lot of aid from the u.s. i hope that the military is not being -- is not being 100% told what to do by the u.s. i don't think that's what's happening here. if the u.s. is just simply advising and strictly advisory compast,-- capacity, and maybe to support democracy, then their advice is well pult. but -- is well put.
but i don't see a complication regarding that matter. >> the military has said that it will stay in power for six months or until elections are held. but who's timetable is it? who is going to organize the elections? >> well, this is what -- this is what a bunch -- this is what most of the protesters tomorrow who are going to demand things. that's one of the principal demands. we want a clear-cut timetable. we want a timetable that is suitable to our demands. we want more -- we still want more from the military. basically this past week, it was a good week for us, to rest and sort of congratulate ourselves. but still an early congratulations. the military has been a bit vague on their timetable. and we still need more things to happen. we still need to see these things in a more -- in a more visible way. >> this is bbc news. still ahead, not your usual uproar. the tragic story of the playboy model anna nicole smith has debuted on the london stage.
the unrest in the middle east and north africa is continuing to put pressure on the price of oil. brent crude reached a 2 1/2-year high and at one point passed $104 per barrel. some analysts say the price may go higher after the latest disturbances in bahrain and libya. experts say tension is unlikely to spread to saudi arabia which is the world's second largest producer. this report from brian miliken. >> its price is under relentless pressure again, not just because of the latest disturbances but because no one knows where trouble will bubble to the surface next. unrest in libya is damaging enough. but north africa and the middle east together account for roughly a third of world production. >> when you see countries, very large exporters, like libya is the eighth largest exporter in the world, and bahrain, with its close ties to saudi arabia, it's likely that the momentum
in the market now will push oil prices higher. >> the main worry here relates to bahrain's sheer majority. unhappy with sunni rule. one fear was that unrest could easily spread to sawedi shias as well -- to saudi shias well but one economist said supplies from the second largest producer are unlikely to be disrupted. >> in general the quality of life in saudi arabia is far more different than the one you see in bahrain. so there is no feeling that the shia population is unfairly treated in saudi arabia. where in bahrain, there is a bit of history of that. >> with bahrain a major u.s. military base, the country will receive plenty of support from its western allies. the trouble across the region has pult the price of brent crude traded in london 20% botch the price of light crude -- above the price of light crude as traded in new york. should the tension ease that disparity also suggests the price could fall again fairly quickly. brian milligan, bbc nules.
-- bbc nuelings. >> the headlines this hour. security forces impose their control on the about a brain capital -- on the bahrain capital and the u.s. concerned about the wounding of opposition none straightors. 10 people killed during demonstrationness libya akede's second city bengaze following calls for a day of rage against the government. a former cargo handler of plotting to blow up fuel tanks at new york's j.f.k. airport has been sentenced to life in prison. prosecutors said russell defraces hoped the attacks would rival the 9-11 terror attacks. >> new york's j.f.k. airport. a busy international gateway to the united states. it was here according to prosecutors that russell
defretes and co-defendant abdul kadiya would blow up fuel tanks and underground pipes. 67-year-old dufretes seen here in court was said to have shot videos and taken photos of the airport and studying security and planning escape routes. it was also claimed he had been overheard saying the whole of kennedy will go up in smoke. defredes and kadir were both convicted last year. now defretes has been sentenced to life in jail. his co-dest was given the same punishment in december. >> i think 15 years would have been more than enough to punish him for what he did and what he talked about. and given his age, in effect, 15 years it would be -- very well have been a life sentence. but given all of the factors that we talked about in court, we just don't believe that his conduct merited a life sentence. >> two other men were also
charged in the plot. one mass already been sent to prison for 15 years. the other is awaiting trial. >> now to something that really does seem like science fiction because researchers are developing artificial limbs, wheelchairs, and computers that can all be controlled by thought alone. it really is mind over matter. some of them have just been shown off at a conference in washington, d.c. and the bbc's science correspondent was there. >> a good grip. >> jesse lost both his arms in an accident. on his left hand is a new kind of artificial limb. it gives him almost as much control as a normal hand zorgd to the researchers. -- according to the normal researchers. he can pick things up. and move them around with incredible precision. >> the ultimate goal of this program is we think about using the arm. we do it in a very natural way.
so if i reach tout pick up a cup of coffee i don't think about how i have to move my elbow and my shoulder or open and close my hand. i just reach out and pick up a cup of coffee. >> i'm controlling this robot arm through this cyber glove and some senses on my arm -- sensors on my arm and elbow. it follows my movements precisely. let's see if i can pick up this bottle. there you go. >> in jess' case the arm is being controlled by the nerve signals from his chest. the next step is to connect the arm dresm to the brain -- directly to the brains of patients. here is a thought controlled wheelchair. being tested by researchers in switzerland. the patient just thinks about moving left and it moves in that direction. tiny electrical signals from the patient's brain are picked up by sensors in this cap.
>> we are working in different aspects of the technology, scientifically addressing how to make possible that people can communicate at different paces depending on their needs. >> with each day, the technology is making small but important differences to jesse's life. for example, he hasn't been able to put on his baseball cap by himself. until now. >> viola. >> a round-up of other news. the u.s. president barack obama and the first lady michelle have accepted the queen's invitation. they will be making a state visit to britain. the two-day visit will begin on may 24. it will be the president's first state visit to any european country. the french navy has seized more than three tons of cocaine from a boat off the french antilles in the caribbean. authorities say the cocaine was in barely concealed bundles in the hold of the ship. six crew members of honduran
and colombian nationalities were arrested. the life of a playboy model who married an elderly billionaire and then died from a drug overdose is not the usual subject matter of an opera but the real-life story of anna nicole, a work which premiered in london. it is rare for the royal opera house to commission a brand new opera andas our arts editor -- and as our arts editor reports, questions on how successful it will be. >> big, blonde and brassy. anna nicole has arrived at the royal opera house. it's a new opera from the respected british composer mark antoni turnage. he said his wife suggested the former playboy playmate as a subject at which point he heard music. >> i immediately saw that anna nicole had a voice. and i could see her singing on stage.
and that -- plenty of characters and people -- real life characters and i couldn't see david cameron singing. it had to be -- and she had something about her. >> anna nicole smith was working a houston strip club when she met this man. a fun-loving billionaire called j. howard marshall. they came to admire each other's assets. and married. >> this way, please. >> global celebrity. but she found fame and fortune did not buy happiness. but led to lawsuits and tragedy. >> please welcome baby jane. >> the man behind the controversial production jerry springer the opera has written the words for anna nicole. did he see it as an opportunity to shock traditional opera goers? >> people confuse shock and tratchsti with surprise -- and travesty with surprise and the element of surprise is essential. and i don't set out to do a croffersal thing. -- a controversial thing.
that's boring and i don't think you can really do it. >> and i'm on part of the anna nicole set at the royal opera house. it may look is your ral but behind this commission is a serious intent and that's to bring urgency and excitement to this art form and this place that they say would be lost if they relied purely on the classic operas. >> teles more enthusiasm for new -- there's more enthusiasm for new opera. the metropolitan opera takes it up, it's a feather in the royal opera house's hat. >> love the show or loathe it, the producers will argue that if public subsidy for the arts is there to support risk taking, then their production has struck the right notes. will gumpert, bbc nution. >> a chinese man has been plagued by headaches for years has finally found out what's been causing them. he thought an ear infection may be responsible for the pain. but then doctors examined him and they found something far
more disturbing. as wendy urcot reports. >> for years this man has lived with horrific headaches. in desperation, he tried to numb the pain. >> i've been using injections to kill the pain in my head and years over four years. >> previous examinations showed nothing wrong. but when he had a c.t. scan at the people's hospital in uge city more than he bargained for. a 10 sent meter dagger blade inbedded in his jaw and doctors can't imagine he didn't know it was there and it stayed there so long. >> we checked his mouth but no wound or scar could be found. it's very strange how the blade got into his jaw. >> the patient says he had a fight with a robber about four years ago but has no recollection of a knife being wielded. never mind being stuck in his jaw. thankfully the blade didn't
touch his brain artery or any major facial nerves. it's now being removed and the man is said to be recovering well. >> and finally a powerful eruption in space. the earth's atmosphere is being affected by the strongest flare released by the sun in four years. the pictures, this is the aurora or northern nights from northern norway. the solar flares make the globe glow nightly and it could disrupt electric power grids and even satellite communications over the next few days. a quick reminder of our main news this hour. the united states has expressed concern over how the security forces in bahrain dealt with hundreds of demonstrators. camped out in the capital. this is bbc numis. you can get plenty more on all the stories we have featured in this hatch hour on our web site.